The summer is coming to a close and my research has answered many questions since I started asking questions about student success and engagement. The topic branched out from there to expand on communication between generations, and smaller parts of what can influence a student’s success in college.

The research methodology I employed was a qualitative case study. I searched for articles through Pace’s library database services, and read through articles until I found one that was relevant enough to write about. I’d repeat this process until I had enough information compiled for the topic, and I’d move on to another topic to research. I would occasionally go back to a topic and edit the write-up, but for the most part I kept moving forward with my research into a new direction every week.

To understand Student Success and Engagement, I attempted to find out the factors that promote a student’s chances for succeeding in college, finding that good attitudes and supportive environments are among the most important aspects of a successful student. Much of this research was performed in the hopes that I would end up promoting my own success, by learning about good students to eventually become better myself. From there Professor Magaldi recommended a new avenue of research, and occasionally I decided something was important enough to research myself.

Communication between generations can cause issues in a classroom, a barrier preventing the students from understanding the teacher and vice versa. The teacher has the responsibility to educate the students, data shows that teachers who also take the responsibility for emotionally caring about the students create an environment that greatly improves student success, more than for teachers who don’t emotionally acknowledge their students.

Depression in college students is increasing in recent years, and the research done with these students shows that depressions is detrimental to many components of success for a student. Additionally the internet has become so enticing for some students that they become addicted and develop problematic internet habits. Internet overuse is associated with neglecting course work or social obligations in favor of coping with stress with memes and social media.

The experience of working with Professor Magaldi this summer has been a wonderful opportunity, and I’ve learned a lot directly and indirectly through this research. Success takes a lot of dedication to reach, and is subjective for each person. The individual needs to recognize what success looks like to them, and teachers need to understand how to talk with their students to create understanding. The results of my research are intuitive, it makes sense that depressed students are less successful, that teachers who put in more effort promote more success, and that motivation determines the level of effort a student puts into their work. Without motivation, it all crumbles.

I’m excited for another opportunity like this one to perform research, and I plan on working with Professor Magaldi to compile all the research and expand upon it to make a paper that can be used by people to promote their own success. The future of this research is in collecting data on what we couldn’t find before, such as for honors societies. Further research can be done on how much success is determined by an individuals natural affinity for school, and how much is effort from the student to be engaged in their environment. Engagement is vital for the student to learn and be interested in what they’re doing, and researching engagement for a topic I’m engaged in was a great educational experience.

Blog 2: Encouraging Success and Engagement with Communication Between Teachers and Students

In the span of a month, my research has proven to have significant relevance to the initial questions raised. Student engagement can be influenced by teachers, primarily by conversations between the two on what they need from each other to reach their goals. That engagement is also heavily implicated in the success of these students, as shown by many studies on institutions across the world.

The relationship between Teachers and Students can be beneficial for both parties, and is built on effective communication between the two. Consistent feedback, and positive encouragement are important for students to feel comfortable in a learning environment, which makes the learning experience easier and more bountiful.

The primary challenge I’ve had with the research thus far has been looking for articles on a topic, and finding hundreds of articles on a database that have the correct tags but don’t fit my research. Some articles look promising and I read into them, but ultimately the findings aren’t relevant or significant for my research. I also enjoy reading the articles, however it’s disappointing coming away from an article to not have any quotes to put into a document. The time feels half-wasted.

I’m majoring in Psychology, and this research is not entirely in that field however I feel like what I’m learning will be highly applicable in the future for my career. Preliminary research on motivational factors for students could lead into further research in the coming years, which is both interesting information and useful as a student so I could promote my own engagement and success.

Blog 1: Grades Aren’t Everything

Professor Magaldi and myself are performing research on how to increase the success and engagement of students in colleges, to make the most of their experiences in their classes and beyond. The focus of our project is the beyond part, where we will search for methods of ensuring students stay motivated, analyze the benefits of Honors and Honors Societies on student success, and how to begin and maintain professional relationships with people that can help advance your career. Further points of interest include extracurricular activities and general college tips to help those who feel lost or overwhelmed by a college environment.

We have three expected outcomes from our research. First, we plan to find the causes and consequences of student engagement, specifically how engagement and success are linked. Second, we expect to understand what differentiates a good Honors Society from one that doesn’t provide direct benefits to the education of its members. Finally through our research we expect to create guidelines of how to create professional relationships whether through seeing professors in their office hours or becoming a leader in a community.

This research is a case study on higher education, analyzing the benefits of certain aspects and how to efficiently achieve success through multiple avenues. A case study approach fits this research best, due to the largely qualitative research on a few different questions within the same field. What we learn from this research may lead to further research in this topic, on specific methods of increasing engagement that may require further knowledge to explain and apply successfully.